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Sudan unrest: Woman in viral protest image speaks out

SYMBOLIC: The image of Alaa Salah chanting during a protest in Sudan has gone viral

THE WOMAN who has become a symbol of the recent protests in Sudan has spoken out about the impact her image has had around the world.

Alaa Salah, a 22-year-old architecture student in Karthoum, went viral when a photograph of her taking part in protests in Sudan’s capital went viral.

In the image she is pictured wearing a white toub and addressing demonstrators from the rooftop of a car surrounded by crowds.

As well as listening to her speak, the protesters can be seen capturing the moment for themselves on their mobile phones.

Speaking of the impact the image has had, Salah told The Guardian: “I’m very glad that my photo let people around the world know about the revolution in Sudan...Since the beginning of the uprising I have been going out every day and participating in the demonstrations because my parents raised me to love our home.”

She added: “The day they took the photo, I went to 10 different gatherings and read a revolutionary poem. It makes people very enthusiastic. In the beginning I found a group of about six women and I started singing, and they started singing with me, then the gathering became really big.”

A popular line from the poem Salah read out – “The bullet doesn’t kill. What kills is the silence of people” – has been chanted by protesters.

Lana Haroun, the photographer who captured the symbolic moment, told CNN: "She was trying to give everyone hope and positive energy and she did it.

"She was representing all Sudanese women and girls and she inspired every woman and girl at the sit-in. She was telling the story of Sudanese women...She was perfect."

The protesters in Sudan called for an end to president Omar al-Bashir’s 30-year long rule.

Today, it has been announced that Bashir has been forced out of power and is under house arrest.

Speaking on state TV, Awad Ibn Auf, the defence minister, said a three-month state of emergency was being implemented and that the army would oversee a two-year transitional period which would be followed by elections.

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